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Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Nathaniel Ford, Muni Boss, Headed to D.C. Metro?

Posted By on Tue, Sep 21, 2010 at 7:15 AM

click to enlarge Is Nat Ford taking his transit act to D.C.?
  • Is Nat Ford taking his transit act to D.C.?
First DPH Director Dr. Mitch Katz, now Nat Ford?

We've reported on how Muni's new fare gates allow more people on the system than the agency would like. Will Muni compensate by having Nathaniel Ford get off?

A Washington, D.C. radio station has reported that Ford, the CEO of Muni -- and the highest-paid man on San Francisco's payroll -- is among the candidates listed to take over the D.C. Metro.

Our messages for Muni and Ford querying whether he'd accept the D.C. job if offered it have not yet been returned. WTOP radio reported Ford's name is just one of 20 or so on the list of potential general managers -- and the only one its sources leaked.

Ford has headed Muni since 2006 after serving as top man at MARTA, Atlanta's transit agency. Like journeys on the agency he heads, his tenure has been more than a little bumpy.

Muni's boss might be the second department head to leave town in short order: Dr. Mitch Katz, the head of the Department of Public Health, has accepted a similar position in Los Angeles County -- though his hiring would still need to be approved by the L.A. County Board of Supervisors. Katz would oversee a massive health system and earn greater than his current $260,000 salary.

Big-name departures in San Francisco are to be expected as our big-name mayor bids to depart to Sacramento -- or loses his bid for lieutenant governor and ingloriously finishes out the last year of his last term. 

Update, 9:10 a.m.: Muni spokesman Paul Rose sent us the following message, which artfully does not quite answer our query about whether Ford would accept the D.C. job if offered it:

Metro approached Mr. Ford about this position, amongst 20 other people they feel are qualified for the role. He has not had serious discussions about it and has not interviewed for the position.

Mr. Ford is completely focused on running the SFMTA. In fact, he is delivering the state of the agency today, including the development of a framework for the future of the agency.

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About The Author

Joe Eskenazi

Joe Eskenazi

Joe Eskenazi was born in San Francisco, raised in the Bay Area, and attended U.C. Berkeley. He never left. "Your humble narrator" was a staff writer and columnist for SF Weekly from 2007 to 2015. He resides in the Excelsior with his wife, 4.3 miles from his birthplace and 5,474 from hers.


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